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Eventprofs to get one week’s notice of vaccine passports

The government will give event professionals in England one week’s notice of plans to introduce vaccine passports for events as part of its autumn and winter Plan B.

The news comes as the government asks eventprofs to submit evidence that will help shape its autumn and winter Plan B for England.

The newly-published document says: “If Plan B is implemented, it could be at short notice in response to concerning data. The government would seek to give businesses at least one week’s notice before mandatory vaccine certification came into force.”

Under Plan B, the government expects that mandatory vaccine-only certification for visitors to venues and events, and vaccine-or-test certification for the workforce would be introduced for the following venues and events:

– all nightclubs, and other venues open after 1am with alcohol, music and dancing
– indoor, crowded settings with 500 or more attendees where those attendees are likely to be in close proximity to people from other households, such as music venues or large receptions
– outdoor, crowded settings with 4,000 or more attendees where those attendees are likely to be in close proximity to people from other households, such as outdoor festivals
– any settings with 10,000 or more attendees, such as large sports and music stadia

There are some settings that will be exempt from requirements to use the NHS COVID Pass, such as communal worship, wedding ceremonies, funerals and other commemorative events.

The government says it wants to take into account relevant comments and views from event professionals to help it make any revisions to the autumn and winter plan. It is asking for responses by Monday 11 October, and encouraging stakeholders to submit views as quickly as possible in case there is need to introduce certification at short notice.

It is particularly interested in views from businesses, event organisers and venue operators, including from those that have experience of using certification on a voluntary basis over the summer, and on the proposals for the workforce.

Anyone wishing to submit evidence to the government can do so by following this link.

Prime minister Boris Johnson initially announced that vaccine passports would be implemented for large events in England by the end of September. That decision was reversed earlier this month, when the government announced its autumn and winter plan for England.

Vaccine passports could form part of a Plan B for England this autumn or winter, which would be implemented if the data suggests the NHS is likely to come under unsustainable pressure. Final decisions on the policy have not been made, and will be informed by the responses the government receives from the sector.

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